About the MHA+ Skills Community

In 2015, Midlands Highways Alliance achieved accreditation by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) as the Client Based Skills Academy.

What is the Client Based Approach?

The CITB worked with the construction industry to draw up a guide to the number of skills outputs that could be applied to particular types and values of construction projects. This is called the Client based Approach. The guidance includes benchmarks to provide developers with confidence that their employment and skills requirements are both proportionate and achievable. They are set across Construction, Repairs and Maintenance and Highways projects.

The Midlands Highways Alliance Plus (MHA+) Skills Community has a broad remit, which includes offering construction/highways specific learning, training and development opportunities, improved access to approved professional development schemes, in conjunction with partners such as Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) and the Transport Planning Society (TPS).

The skills community assists in building the capacity and capability of the existing workforce to help address the skills shortages that the construction industry is anticipating. Enhancing development opportunities and working with others will inspire a diverse range of talented people to join the construction industry.

Activities include community and school engagement projects including the ‘Bridge to Schools’ programme, which is organised in collaboration with ICE and the MHA Framework contractors. Other activities include STEM Ambassador training.

The eight framework suppliers, the MHA authorities, as well as professional bodies work collaboratively with the Skills Academy to provide opportunities to build the skills of their staff, the supply chain and the local community.

The MHA Employment and Skills Plan (ESP) forms part of the delivery of a strategy that boosts skills, and ensures that construction projects support the development of initiatives to meet training needs and address skills gaps. We have incorporated activities based on national best practice and those developed by Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

The construction industry is enthusiastic about this approach and keen to ensure we all work collaboratively to develop the next generation of skilled staff.

An ESP will be completed each eligible scheme on the MHA Framework (target price over £1M). This plan sets out how they will support skills development across 14 different activity areas.